The Advantages of a CRT Monitor

By Matt Koble

CRT, short for Cathode Ray Tube, is a technology commonly used in television sets and computer monitors. While perhaps not as popular as they once were, CRT monitors still offer many advantages over their main competitors. While they're bigger and bulkier than LCD monitors, many feel that the advantages still outweigh those of LCD displays.

Cost

One of the main advantages CRT monitors hold over their competition is price. CRT monitors are typically much more affordable than LCD monitors with comparable components. As of June, 2010, CRT monitors cost anywhere from $50 to upwards of $300, depending greatly on their quality. Typically, you can expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $100 for a common CRT monitor, though, while a common LCD monitor would probably cost up to twice as much.

Viewing Angles

You may notice with certain monitor and television types that the picture quality changes drastically depending on your angle to the picture. This problem is particularly prevalent in LCD displays but is virtually non-existent in CRT monitors. A CRT monitor will retain the same picture quality no matter what angle you look at it from, giving these monitors more flexibility when it comes to placement, distance and view angle.

Color Quality

Common LCD monitors use TN technology, which is incapable of displaying all of the 16.7 million colors used in 24-bit displays. CRT monitors, on the other hand, offer all of these colors easily. This means that CRT monitors are capable of displaying more vibrant and detailed color than some of the competition. This added color accuracy makes CRT monitors better for graphic designers, gamers and media-lovers who can't afford a high-quality HD display.

Overall Image Quality

Aside from the actual colors themselves, CRT monitors also have other qualities that give them a good image quality, overall. CRTs typically have high resolution, meaning a finer and more detailed picture. CRTs also feature dark blacks and high contrast levels, making them suitable to use in diverse lighting situations. Another key image quality advantage is the lack of motion blur. Motion blur occurs in some monitors when images on the screen change too quickly. For example, an action-packed and fast-paced video game would, on other monitors, be blurry during the faster parts, while CRT monitors show the game without the added blur, according to DisplayMate.com.

A Brief Word on LCD

While LCD picture quality is typically less than that of a CRT display, this is rapidly changing. LCD technology is advancing much quicker than CRT technology, meaning it's catching up to the CRT pictures quality. While these high-quality LCD monitors are costly and rare, as the technology advances they'll become cheaper and more readily available, meaning many of the CRT advantages will eventually be better on LCD screens.